Farm Happenings at Where the Redfearn Grows Natural Farm
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Farm Happenings for June 25, 2020

Posted on June 20th, 2020 by Dave Redfearn

Thanks to the crew that came out to help the other day, we were able to get a lot done, including harvesting a great deal of garlic.  It's drying down in the barn for a couple weeks so that it can store well and then...garlic will be on the list! Hurrah! It was so much fun working with so many of you!  We'll plan on another evening like that in a week or two.  We're monitoring the garlic and onion plantings to see when they will be ready to harvest and we'll send out another call, so keep on the lookout if that sounds interesting to you.

A few items to consider.  We're still a week out before the 4th of July week, but just want you to be thinking about it.  As your friendly farmers, we don't really get to take holidays (do something you love and you'll never work a day in your life, right?) so we'll be doing CSA pickups like normal the week of the 4th INCLUDING SATURDAY JULY 4th.  That's right, July 4th is on a Saturday this year, so Saturday pickups will go on as scheduled, but if you will have other plans, we'd encourage you to plan ahead and switch pickup dates.  You can log in to Harvie and go to "deliveries" and you should see a July 4th delivery.  Hit the reschedule button and you can choose a different date or pickup location.  You'll want to do that within the next week because once the coming Saturday rolls around, it's much more difficult to make these changes in the system.  Of course you always have the option to just pick up your share at the farm sometime Friday through Monday morning at your convenience using the Friday Self-serve pickup.

Also, just in general for Saturday pickups, now that we are experiencing the heat of summer we'd recommend the earlier you come the better. Keeping veggies cold is essential to long term storage and preservation of freshness.  The process starts when we harvest your veggies, usually early in the morning before they get hot in the sun and then rush them into our walk in coolers.  We keep your produce at 37 degrees (well the greens at least, not the tomatoes).  We also chose to use the plastic flip top bins for the CSA shares because they help retain the cool and keep out the heat.  But those shares have to leave their cold home at 4:30 in the morning to make their trip to the markets and they start warming up from there.  We REALY try to keep direct sunlight off your share but as the mornings warm up, the shares do to.  Before 10:00AM is best and I'd say before 11:00AM is almost essential.  We just can't guarantee the best freshness as the temps hit 90 degrees or more (much more in the middle of an asphalt parking lot).  Also, pro tip: if you bring a cooler with an icepack you can drop that bag of produce right in and cool it back down.  It also let's you go run some other errands and not have to worry about damaging your produce.  Believe us, if that bag sits in the backseat of your car while you run in for a quick errand and the sun hits the bag, you have a greenhouse within a greenhouse effect.  Just remember how hot your car is when you get in when the sun is shining?  Much worse for the veggies.  Basically, we do our best to deliver the freshest produce possible and we don't want you to get home with something that isn't super-fresh.  

While we're on the subject of storage, you probably know this, but DON'T put tomatoes in the fridge.  That kind of cold temperature will make our amazing homegrown tomatoes, taste too much like supermarket produce and we can't have that!  Sweet potatoes are another one that shouldn't be put in the fridge.  Basically everything else though needs to be in the fridge and needs to stay a a plastic bag to keep in the moisture.  One more pro tip:  Greens attached to roots, like carrot tops, beet greens, turnip greens, etc should be cut off and stored separately.  Both the roots and the greens do better if not kept together.  

Lee's Summit Saturday pickup folks: we will continue to pick up at 2nd and Douglas up until and including the 4th of July.  However, on the 11th of July we will be joining the rest of our farmer friends at the Socially Distanced Lee's Summit Farmer's Market located at the Abundant Life Church parking lot.  This is 3 weeks away but I wanted to give you a heads up.  More info later about that.  The market has requested that we discontinue doing the pickup on our own and join the main market at the much larger socially distanced location.  We checked it out today and it was actually quite nice.  Plenty of parking for you and plenty of room (vendors 3 stalls  apart from each other). We really won't have much leftover for sale but we'll be doing the CSA pickup there. The downside is we can't do our cool drive up method much longer.   BUT THE NEXT TWO PICKUPS REMAIN THE SAME IN LEE'S SUMMIT AT 2nd and Douglas!  If you have feedback either way on this change, I'd be happy to hear it and if you have an alternate pickup location you'd prefer like a church parking lot where we could have permission to do what we've been doing, we could possibly entertain doing that instead.  But as of now, the plan will be to be at Abundant Life with the other vendors on July 11th.

Hope you are having a great week! Thanks for being our farm-supporter!

Your very own, personal, in the flesh, veggie farmers

Dave and Sheri